Consumer Protection Act applies to RTI applicants too – Consumer Forum
An application was filed with the Kochi Municipal Corporation under the Right to Information (RTI) Act seeking to know the names of the councillors who had failed to convene ward sabhas once in three months. When the public information officer didn’t provide the required information, the applicant approached the Ernakulam Consumer Disputes Redressal Forum contending that as he was denied information without any plausible reason, it amounted to deficiency in service.
During the hearing, the forum cited a verdict of the National Consumer Disputes Redressal Commission and said that the RTI Act provides for disciplinary action and penalty against the erring official but there is no remedy in the act for the applicant if information sought is not provided thus resulting in deficiency in service.
The case falls under Section 2(i)(o) of Consumer Protection Act, which states that service means service of any description which is made available to potential users that include purveying of news or supplying of other information. Hence, the forum has directed the PIO to pay the complainant a compensation of Rs. 5,000 to the applicant and another Rs. 1,000 towards the cost within 30 days.
Readers may like to refer to a detailed article – “Additional remedy for RTI applicants under the Consumer Protection Act” Read at: http://www.rtifoundationofindia.com/additional-remedy-rti-applicants-under-consumer-pr-2642#.UqUYRvQW1OE